Nathan Lyon joins exclusive club with 72-year first

Nathan Lyon has joined an exclusive club after he became just the second Australian Test cricketer to achieve a particularly remarkable bowling feat.

The off-spinner took four wickets in six balls either side of a Jon Holland maiden over to reduce Pakistan from 1-57 to 5-57 on day one of the second Test in Abu Dhabi.

With the hosts failing to score a single run between the second and fifth wickets to fall, Lyon became the first Australian in 72 years to take four Test wickets at the same score.

The last and only other Aussie to do so was Bill O’Reilly, who dropped New Zealand from 3-37 to 7-37 in March 1946.

Lyon’s spell was the first occurrence by any Test player since England’s Fred Titmus in 1965, while three more Englishmen and Pakistan’s Pervez Sajjad have also achieved the feat.


Lyon’s efforts pushed him past Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson on the list of Australia’s all-time Test wicket-takers.

Now boasting 314 dismissals from his 79 matches, the 30-year-old said he expected to hear from Johnson after play.

“It’s a massive honour to pass the likes of Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson,” Lyon told reporters.

“I have played a lot of cricket with Mitch and he has been like a big brother to me so I know there will be a banter back and forth on text message.

“I’ve been fortunate to play 80 Test matches for Australia and be in the position to take 314 Test wickets. Personally it’s a great achievement and it is something I will look back on when I retire.

“I know my mum and dad are pretty proud but right now it’s about doing my best and helping Australia win cricket Tests.”

Nathan Lyon wrote himself into the record books with his four-wicket haul against Pakistan. Pic: Getty

Lyon said he felt he was bowling better than he ever had, having taken time to seek advice and work on his game, and believed he would take more wickets in the future.

“Looking back four years ago to now I’ve learnt a lot about my bowling,” he said.

“I’ve got more consistent and … over the last 24 months I have improved a lot of small areas.

“I’m very confident with the way the ball is coming out of my hand … and I’ve never been one for personal success or goals but … I think I can get better.”

Most Test wickets for Australia

708: Shane Warne

563: Glenn McGrath

355: Dennis Lillee

314: Nathan Lyon

313: Mitchell Johnson

310: Brett Lee

with agencies